Asda has appointed Charles Redfield, senior vice president for food and beverage at Walmart-owned Sam’s Club, as its chief merchandising officer.

Redfield replaces Darren Blackhurst, who left earlier this year. Redfield started his career at Sam’s Club over 20 years ago working on checkouts and in various store operations roles. He then moved to a Canadian retailer, but returned to Sam’s Club in 2001. He has experience in categories including fresh, frozen, electronics, homewares, clothing, pharmacy and optical.

Asda chief executive Andy Clarke said in an internal statement to staff: “Our two longer-term aspirations to be the leader in non-food and a clear number two in food require us to take advantage of the global sourcing opportunities that being part of Walmart brings us. The opportunity to work even harder to leverage this relationship on behalf of our customers is significant. What’s more, success is crucial - it will allow us to meet the commitments we make to our customers to keep lowering prices and also bring them the best we can offer from around the world.

“I’m looking to Charles to lead these efforts and make a real and lasting strategic impact here in Asda. As a member of the leadership team at Sam’s Club, he comes from a business that’s a similar in size to Asda, but more importantly, his reputation as a builder of talented teams and his commitment to what’s best in our culture will ensure he can make a positive difference.

“I also believe that Charles’ move sends an important signal about our maturing relationship with Walmart - as we told analysts earlier in the year, whether it’s products, prices or people, I’m looking for us to move faster to leverage our unique partnership with Walmart to make us an even better company for British shoppers.”

Redfield will relocate to Yorkshire and start in September.